'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Me-Now-Views; Less Speak More Peek

The posts about the Great Down Under trip may be complete - but there is still about four weeks' worth of images to share!!! They will be completely random and in no particular timeline.

Menosukhi Monday

How gorgeous is the boy now?!!

MenoSundays; Life Lived Lovingly

Latterly, these Sunday posts have become a little bit... selfish. There is light at the end of the 'lurgy tunnel' though, and I am again grateful to you all for the well-wishes. Even as a solitary being, it is always good to know there are others to whom one can reach out.

I am that. Solitary. Happy in my own company, but quite capable of being sociable also.

I enjoy the silence of solitude. Practicing keeping the mind still and focused on only one thing. It is part of a daily spiritual routine. Many people, when they talk of silence, they mean getting away from television, radio, endless chatter, traffic and so on. The quietening of these things does not necessarily equal silence. In the most remote places, there are sounds to be heard. The breeze in the leaves; a bird here and there; perhaps some water - a stream? Rain on the window? These sounds break into the silence but also bring a sense of peace and well-being, so we do not think of them as nuisance or invasion of our inner space.

In my meditative practice these days, where once one was able to eliminate even the sounds of nature and enter the pure inner silence, it is now the case of a raging torrent of tinnitus. It was around for quite a long time - one of those symptoms of the dreaded and long-running "menopolyxinaemia"** - but it has grown significantly worse the last year or so.

Am actually quite good at 'tuning out' to it, though it does sometimes contribute to insomnia. In meditation, however, it is as invasive as chainsaws and bulldozers.

What is more, the already slightly dodgy hearing is now diminishing as a result. It's the equivalent of fuzzy vision in the eyes (don't get me started on that one). Mostly there is one constant sound, but it spikes every now and then - more and more often. There are lots of examples around to sample, but this one is closest to my own sound.

There's a lot of information out there about living with tinnitus. It is quite a common condition.

Do any of you share this experience? Does it sometimes feel like it's taking over? For me, the one thing I treasure most is the one thing now sacrificed and I am in a process of learning to accept it. There can be no true silence now.

** haven't mentioned the dreaded meno or the soup it creates for a while. Mainly because this is now year fifteen of the debacle. It started in slow and stealthily, peaked whilst I was at the ashram and has been gradually, stealthily, phasing itself out again. Thank goodness for the timing and the ashram and all, I say. You may have read about me in the newspapers otherwise. Murder. Or worse.